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Income tax filing season begins

The Minnesota Department of Revenue announced that the state income tax filing season is officially underway. The department is now accepting individual income tax returns for tax year 2008.

"This year, with a challenged economy, taxpayers are counting on their tax refunds more than ever," Minnesota Revenue Commissioner Ward Einess said. "By filing early, taxpayers can receive a much-needed boost when they need it the most."

Taxpayers that e-file, can do so beginning today and those who e-file their own returns, should visit the Minnesota Department of Revenue Web site for information on approved software products.

"E-filing refunds are processed in three to five days, much faster than the average 30 days for paper returns," Einess said.

In addition to e-filing, taxpayers can also make payments electronically to control when the money is transferred.

Each year, Minnesota receives 2.6 million income tax returns. Last year, Minnesota led the nation with more than 1.8 million e-filed returns -- or 71 percent, up 3 percent from 2006. Electronic-filing programs are designed to help filers receive all the credits they qualify for which could lead to a larger refund.

The Department is also reminding taxpayers that last year's economic stimulus payment is not subject to income tax.